Amidst the longest fjords and gorgeous hills lies Bergen – a charming city on the south-western coast of Norway. Known as the city of the seven mountains, Bergen served as the capital of Norway during the 13th century and still remains the international centre for shipping, education, tourism and finance. As soon as one enters the city, it is just natural to get captivated by the colourful houses peeping out of the hill slopes, boats fluttering in the fjords and an eventful city centre which is the one-stop destination for the large student population interested in nightlife.
Rail, road, air, sea – the city offers all possible means to reach. But the most preferred way would be the amazingly beautiful Oslo-Bergen rail transport. Regarded as the Europe’s best train journey, with NSB (Norwegian State Railways) offering utmost comfort and stations like Myrdal, Finse, Flam and Voss on the way. As a result, it is a journey cherished by most tourists.
Being the trading center from 14th to mid-16th century as part of the Hanseatic League, Bryggen stands as a memory of the old times. This wharf consists of a series of wooden houses along the harbor and represents the iconic Bergen image. Along the houses there are many bars, restaurants and souvenir shops. Many tourists and the locals also come to Bryggen for the famous fish market (Fisketorget)where one can have a taste of street food and also shop for a variety of fresh sea food.
You can explore it more in detail here : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V9KBVwJxnAk
One of the most popular tourist attraction is one of the city mountains – Mt. Floyen. Right in the centre of the city with easy access by local transport, this spot serves as the best viewpoint of the entire city. There are two ways to reach to the top – 1) The floyen funicular which takes about 8 minutes. The trip starts from the base, close to the fish market and the journey to the top itself is a magnificent experience. The funicular operates from early morning till evening. 2) The other way (preferred mostly by locals) is to enjoy a moderate trek along the side of the mountain. This hike is a surreal experience as you explore the surroundings and get along with fellow hikers.
At the top, there are cafes, restaurants and play area for kids. There are also souvenir shops where you can buy something as a memory of reaching the top of Mt. Floyen.
Apart from exploring the city and its marvels, one can also target the numerous options of trekking the nordic mountains in and around Bergen. While Mt. Floyen is an easy and recreational hike, there is Mt. Ulriken which offers a longer and more strenuous trek to the top. Taking the bus number 12 from Bergen to Montana base is the easiest way to start. There are many paths to the top ranging from steep to very steep. There are signposts along the way which offer guidance.
A person with liking for tougher experiences should go to Pulpit Rock (in Stavanger). The best way to reach is through a rented car (numerous rental options available from Bergen). It takes an entire day for this trek. The way up and back takes 5-6 hours. Proper hiking shoes, weather resistant clothes and food-water supplies need to be taken.